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Us 16, Clinton 13, Libya 9, Mullen 9, U.s. 8, Washington 7, Stevens 5, America 5, Benghazi 4, Tom Pickering 2, United Nations 2, John Yarmuth 2, Chris Stevens 2, Pickering 2, Kenya 2, Eastern Libya 2, Tripoli 2, Public Administration 1, United States Government 1, The Board 1,
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  CSPAN    Capitol Hill Hearings    News/Business.  

    December 20, 2012
    6:00 - 7:00am EST  

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democrats, and the house of much stronger support for gun- control. why was there not a piece of bad luck gestation brought to the floor for a vote? >> perhaps you are familiar with the 60 votes ruled in the senate. i did not want them to what the plo -- walk the plank. this is a tough vote. it is a very complicated issue. it is very complex. it is something that many of us have been fighting in the particulars of this, and some in their personal lives, as well as official lives. this is a very high priority for us.
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because of it -- money. let's just take money out there on the side on those that would be opposed to gun safety. i did not heed hunters with the same brush. i think the assault weapon gives hunters a bad name, and that is undeserved. many of them think it should be banned. that is why i am so glad my consummate is taking the lead to make that distinction. the fact is that there was no prospects of success for the members to be here to continue to make the fight so when there was a prospect of the feds -- a prospect of success, but they would be here. the other then be cleared out by the nra on a boat that was not afford to come to call. >> one of my jobs as the
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democrat is chief deputy. we had to vote to pass sensible gun legislation through the house, but when the senate said they could not live with 60 votes, the leader made the decision that this really was not the thing to do at that time. we return to pass health care reform and other issues. as we have all said here today and all believe, this has changed when you realize that someone with one of these guns, with one of the high-capacity assault magazines can go in and kill little children and their teachers. the majority of americans agree with us on this, and that is why we will have to pass the legislation. i want to thank everyone for coming. did you have a word of wisdom to hearken back to the past? >> i think the leader in day and
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said the reality in congress, 2009-2011. the house took a lot of boats that never went anywhere in the senate and had to concentrate on what could did -- could get done. we save the economy. we pass universal health care for the first time. but this has now changed. the reason we are all here today is not just that we just had a terrific example of the carnage that results would be given to the enablers of mass murder, the leadership of the nra, but we think, hope, believe, and are working to make sure that the carnage has changed the equation. politics is the art of the possible. we think it is possible now to stop the carnage. we're going to do it. >> thank you very much.
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>> in a few moments, members of the senate foreign relations committee respond to the state department report on the september 11 attack of the u.s. consulate report -- consulate in libya that killed four americans. diplomats will speak to reporters about the report. >> on "washington journal" we will focus on gun-control issues with john yarmuth. tim helskamp will join us to talk about the fiscal cliff. and we will look at what options the administration has to tighten gun control laws with or without congressional action. our guest will be david ingram,
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responded for reuters. live on c-span every day at 7:00 eastern. two committees are holding hearings today on the attack in libya that killed four americans. the senate foreign relations committee will hear from deputy secretary of state at 8:00 eastern. you can see that live on c-span to. mr. burns will go to the other side of the capital of the afternoon to testify before the house foreign affairs committee about the report. that is live on c-span3 at 1:00 eastern. >> our first experience was to come and a different way than every other family up here. probably would never happen again in history. after dad was sworn in, we went and took a picture of the family behind a wall office desk.
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that night we did not get to move into the office -- white house because they left their daughter and son in law to pack all of their clothes and belongings. it literally took seven or eight days. we had to go back to the little house in alexandria, virginia. the neighborhood was surrounded by secret service. i will never forget, that night mom is cooking dinner. literally we're sitting around the dinner table and mama's cooking dinner, and she said something is wrong. [laughter] she said you just became president of the united states, and i am still cooking. >> steve forbes, and gen and barbara bush on growing up in the white house, sunday evening at 7:30 eastern and pacific.
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right through christmas day on c-span3. members of the senate foreign relations committee received a top-secret closed briefing wednesday on the september 11 attack on the u.s. consulate and then got the -- in benghazi libya. this is about 12 minutes. >> what do you think of that finding and [inaudible] >> my understanding is that the
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standard with which the accountability board looks at people is a very high standard. it is called a breach of duty. there is no question that there were people within the state department that were remiss and did not execute in an appropriate way. there are also some cultural issues. there were no doubt a number of fallen. to that end, i know that secretary clinton was unable to be able to testify tomorrow in an open setting. i do think it is imperative that she testify in an open session, prior to any changing. i'd think that is very important for her. i think that is very important for our country, and important
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for the country to understand the inner workings of the state department itself. the foreign relations committee has not done an authorization for the state department since i have been here. there is no doubt a lot that we could have done to understand more in the workings of the state department itself. i do think it is imperative that secretary clinton do testify in an open setting, prior to any new secretary of state being confirmed. >> are we any closer to knowing who committed the attack? yes, it was a culmination of groups under an umbrella. i think we generally know who they want. this is part of libya that is controlled by militias.
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they are generally operating under a very loose umbrella. again, a number of participants that were involved. the areas fall of extremists and folks that the -- that identify themselves as being affiliated with al qaeda and others. there is one particular group, i do not know if it is classified as to what the name of the group is, but we're pretty certain who it is. >> [inaudible] >> it is really interesting, everyone of these problems, the solution is more money. it is indicative. i have heard much of that in the hearing room just a minute ago. no doubt security takes resources. top to bottom review of the
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state department to ensure the resources that are already there are being used and not an appropriate way would be a beginning point. then at some points with the appropriate resource allocation should be. it is my understanding hillary clinton is already implementing all of the policy points. yet at the same time, it is my understanding we have had a number of accountability review boards that have made recommendations, and this group looking back, there is many of those that have never been implemented. it is an interesting point that there have been a lot of review boards, but many of the recommendations have never been implemented. i think we can all do a better job at fairness. i think the foreign relations committee itself should suddenly do top to bottom review, and i
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think we should do that prior to talking about additional resource allocation. i think there are cultural issues and people that were very remiss in carrying out their duties. i think there were people there that were very remiss in carrying out their duties, the question. i think there were cultural issues. i think we need to determine what we want to do with expeditionary set up like this where we are in a place where the country does not have control of the country itself, where militias are controlling it, and we need to understand what the value to american diplomacy is to having people in a place like this. at the end of the day, i think it is very important for secretary clinton -- i hope she recovers quickly, i think it is very important she come before the committee. i think it would be here -- very
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helpful candidly for the next secretary of state to fully understand from her perspective and all of us some of the cultural issues that the department is dealing with. >> there specific recommendations for security? >> numbers were thrown out, but i do not know how anyone could possibly be in a position to analyze that yet without the beginning of top to bottom review of the department itself. there were numbers thrown out. by the way, one of the highest priorities we should have is when we have these brave men and women doing what they're doing for our country, we should ensure there is an appropriate security. believe me, i think that is number one. i met the individuals who rescued people who had been injured from the roof there at
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the consulate. they truly are american heroes and we should do everything to support the people who risk their lives in that regard, and that the same time we need to make sure the resources are allocated properly and have a culture within the department that understands the importance of security and that regard. with that, thank you. >> thank you. >> i just let that classified briefing from the account of ability review board on the incident that occurred in benghazi. the conclusion was very start, candid, and honest and told us the following. mistakes were made. lives were lost. lessons need to be learned. first, american -- america cannot retreat from a dangerous world. it is important for us to be there, not only protecting
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values, but american citizens. those who represent as overseas made our protection, not only those in uniform, but those in the civilian sector who have to import and missions to perform. third, there was a breakdown on september 11 that is our -- stark and challenging to all of us in public life. i went through the litany of things that were given to us by the accountability review board. the intelligence fell short. security personnel were inexperienced and unprepared. the security systems failed. our host nation was lacking in protection for our own people, and senior state department officials unfortunately showed a lack of leadership and management ability. that is a challenge to all of us. it is a challenge for us to assess this in an honest fashion and change policy, to put resources in place that will make a difference. finally, we cannot provide the
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protection americans representing us in our nation require without adequate resources, without a security plan that is reliable, and without leadership that understands the security threat that we face. let me speak about resources for a moment. we are discussing the budget deficit. cutting spending is a common mantra and understandable. we need to cut spending. we need to take a step back and make an honest assessment of those things that are absolutely essential for america's security. people always talk about the department of defense, and they should, but not forget the department of state, the role that they perform are around the world is important to america's defense and as important as anything else in terms of avoiding war and conflict in the future. what we learned is we cannot go with inadequate resources and preparation. i think the key, the new
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challenge will include making certain america is strong, not only through the permanent defense but department of state as well. the last point is anyone who bought "internal investigation and accountability review board would gloss over what happened" need to take a look at this report. admiral will lead is one of our best. they have done an extraordinarily candid and frank job analyzing a very delicate and tragic situation. -- admiral mullen. >> [inaudible] >> that was brought up several times. it was a conclusion on accountability review board that there was no "willful misconduct."
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it is also clear there was a failure when it came to the management of security. as a consequence, some internal administrative action is being taken within the state department as a result of that. >> hillary clinton is head of the state department. she she except responsibility? >> she has accepted responsibility. weeks ago. that is the kind of maturity we expect in our leaders not to run away from the reality. she has faced it honestly. she brought in the independent board of noted professionals. they have come to a conclusion that is very stark and challenging to hurt and all of us and government. we all need to do a better job. we owe it to ambassadors stevens. >> [inaudible] >> i hope secretary clinton will be able to testify. i know she is recovering at
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home. i hope with only a few days left in this session. ultimately we need to present this to the american people. we have lost four of our best, including the ambassador. it is rare occurrence, but the fact that it did occur is a challenge to all of us. telling the american people what happened in on the sterns and making sure we do everything on our part to make sure it does not happen. >> you mentioned the steps taken in the state department to punish people. is that coming out in the briefing? >> thank you. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2012]
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>> i just have a briefing on benghazi and what happened, and my impression is the boy scout failed the model of be prepared. they failed to anticipate what was coming because of how bad the security risk already was. the bill to provide adequate security. they failed to connect the dots. they did not have adequate security leading up to the attack. once the attack occurred, the security was woefully inadequate. i thought the report was very thorough and thoughtful. my question is, will it be helpful to present further attacks, and will the state department take the lessons learned and make sure in the future we can prevent things like this from happening? is this a reflection within a
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system issue within the different or people making poor judgment? >> to discipline someone through the state to permit you have to show willful misconduct, and i do not think there was any of that, but clearly very poor judgments being made. there was a failure of leadership of a very high level. the state department. failure to make proper decisions. of administrative action will be taken. what will happen? >> those are the questions we will specifically ask in the open hearing tomorrow. thank you. >> [inaudible] >> i think there was a major failure in the state department that resulted in the deaths or brave americans. incredible stories of courage of what happened during the attack, but they were in a situation where there would not be able to escape. thank you.
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>> how are you all doing? good morning. the foreign relations committee just listen to a classified briefing, but that unclassified proponent of it, all of it, for every member was an extremely impressive, very comprehensive and very professional presentation. i think members on both sides of the aisle would join together in congratulating secretary clinton
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for appointing the accountability board of such quality and for adopting everything one of the recommendations. i think that is an extremely positive step. i think it is the courageous step. and it is one which fully recognizes her responsibility as the head of the department to make sure that every further effort is made to provide security personnel serving abroad. the quality of this report i think is really exceptional. i think you have to look at the two leaders of this, admiral mullen and tom pickering. tom pickering has served as ambassador in seven different locations. he has served as the undersecretary of political
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affairs. ambassador admiral mullen was chairman of the chief of staff's. these are men who did not mince any words. they did not hedge. there were is candid and direct, and i think this report is a quality report. i think the state department can take pride in it. i think the country is well served by the process that was put in place. secretary clinton said she would do this, and it would be a completely on varnished appraisal, and that is exactly what it is. i think she and the administration deserves credit for doing what was required, and for really going to great lengths to make sure this was a very good presentation.
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>> what administrative action is being taken inside the state department as a result? >> everything the report has suggested has been embraced by the state department, and more. secretary clinton has set out additional measures that she thinks can contribute to the advancing the interests that are set out in the report itself. that will become clearer tomorrow. secretary burns will, -- will report to the committee in an open session and lay out the steps that are being taken. i think the department has taken a huge step forward to address the lessons learned, which are important to everyone. there are 70,000 employees of it there. 275 different posts. people are risk. it is a dangerous world we're in.
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i think this will significantly advance the to security -- it is the security personnel of this country. let me stop there to say we will pick it up tomorrow. the report specifically calls on resources. there is a need to put $2.5 billion per year over a number of years into efforts to strengthen our security status in various critical places. that is some of what we will talk about tomorrow also. thank you all very much. gues>> after briefing senators,a diplomat spoke with reporters for a half hour. in the wake of the report citing systemic failures, the state department security chief and other officials have resigned.
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>> welcome, everybody. thank you for joining us. as you know, the accountability review board that the secretary established has now completed its work. the classified and unclassified version have been released to the hill and have better chance to see the unclassified version as well as the secretary's letter to members. the vice chairman of the accountability review board will join us here to address your questions. and introducing them will be deputy secretary of state, bill byrne. mr. secretary. >> thank you very much.
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good afternoon. as all of you know, ambassador pickering and mullen appeared to discuss the findings from the accountability review board. and we will testify tomorrow. i make just two quick points. then i will give the floor to the ambassadors to discuss the report and take your questions. first, as secretary clinton said in her letter to congress, we accept each and every one of the board's recommendations and have already begun to implement it. in accordance with the law, she ordered the review to determine exactly what happened, because that is how we can learn and to prove. i want to convey the appreciation to the team for doing such a thorough job. the board's report takes a clear-eyed look at serious, systemic problems.
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problems that are unacceptable. problems for which we take responsibility. problems with already begun to fix. we asked congress for funds to hire new personnel, and reinforce the hon. facilities. we are updating our deployment procedures to increase the number of experienced and well- trained staff serving at this
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post. we will discuss all of this work and more with congress tomorrow. so for now, let me just make one other point. i have been a very proud member for more than 30 years and honor of serving overseas. i know that diplomacy by its very nature must sometimes be practiced in dangerous places. chris stevens, my friend and colleague, understood diplomats cannot work and bunkers to do their jobs. we have a profound responsibility. it is important to recognize that our colleagues across the department, at home and abroad, get it right countless times a day for years on end in some of the toughest circumstances imaginable. we cannot lose sight of that. we'll learn some painful and
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hard lessons in libya. we are already acted on them, but we have to do better. we owe that to our colleagues who lost their lives. we owe it to the security professionals we owe it to thousands of our colleagues serving in america with great dedication every day in diplomatic posts around the world. with that, let me turn to embassador -- ambassador pickering and mullen. >> thank you for the very wise words which reflect the focus with which we put our efforts. i would like to think secretary clinton for her step best reports for our efforts and her
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ambitious reports for implementing the recommendations, and we wish her speedy recovery. in late september she asked me to serve as chairman of the accountability review board and asked admiral mullen to be a vice chairman. let me say what a pleasure it was to work with admiral mullen and the other members of the board. he brought a special perspective, wisdom, and good sense to a very difficult and trying process. there are three other members of the board that are not with us today, but without whom this report would not have been possible. a professor of public administration at syracuse university and former chief executive of the united nations world food program and undersecretary general for management of the united nations. an experienced retired senior foreign service officer who served most recently of the interim director of the bureau
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of overseas building operations and hugh turner, an experienced and retired senior intelligence officer who spent 22 years in the business and served last as associate deputy director for operations of the central intelligence agency, and to an excellent state department staff led by a member who made a major contribution to our work, and without whom we would not be here with you today. secretary clinton convened the accountability review board to examine the facts and circumstances surrounding the september attack on u.s. diplomatic facilities in libya. as you well know, these attacks resulted and the tragic deaths of four brave americans. ambassador chris stevens, clint already, and tire around the woods. -- tyron woods.
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we were not asked to conduct an investigation into the attacks to find out who the perpetrators were or their motives. that is the statutory role of the fed ruled bureau of investigation and the intelligence community. we enjoyed excellent cooperation with both of them throughout the report. under relevant statute, secretary clinton asked us to examine whether the attacks were security related and other security systems and procedures were adequate and implemented properly. the impact of the availability of information and intelligence, and whether anything else about the attacks might be relevant to appropriate security management of u.s. diplomatic missions around the world. we were also asked to look at what the u.s. government employee or contractor breached his or her duty.
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basically we wanted to find the lessons to be learned. better to protect americans from future attacks. to do all that we interviewed more than 100 people. we reviewed thousands of documents and watched hours of video. we spoke with people who were on the scene that night. who were in tripoli. who were in washington. we spoke to military and intelligence officials, including many state department personnel, and to experts who did not work for the united states government. throughout the process we enjoyed cooperation from the department of state, and the interagency partners. the decision to brief you on the report findings reflect a commit to transparency that the department's -- at the department's highest levels. but we give you a brief introduction to the events that night. then ask admiral mullen if he
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would then share the findings of the report. then i will return briefly to talk about the overarching recommendations. what happened on september 11 was a series of attacks in multiple locations by unknown assailants that ed and flowed over a period of almost eight hours. the u.s. security personnel were heroic and their efforts to protect colleagues, including ambassador stevens. they did their best that they possibly could with what they had. but they had was not enough. even for the -- either for the general threat and most certainly against the overwhelming number of attackers and the weapons with which they faced. frankly, the state department had not given benghazi the security is needed, and on that note, let me ask admiral will win if he will please relate to
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you our specific findings. thanks.>> i appreciate that. i do appreciate your leadership throughout the process as well. good afternoon. the board found the attacks were security-related. responsibility for the loss of life, injuries and damage to u.s. facilities rest completely and solely with the terrorists who conducted the attacks. that does not mean there are not lessons to be learned. the board found the security posture at this threshold -- special vision compound was an adequate and grossly inadequate to deal with the attack that took place that night. the state department pierrot's have not taken on a security as a shared responsibility, so the support needed was often lacking and left to the working level to resolve.
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the buildings did not meet department standards for office buildings for high stress areas. there were categorized as temporary residential facilities. while a number of security upgrade were done in 2012, the compound did not have the security features and equipment it needed. the board also found the rotational stepping system and in adequacy of the diplomatic security staffing numbers to be a major factor behind the weakness of the security platform. the continual rotation of agent inhibited the development of institutional and on the ground knowledge and continuity and security this isn't and implementation. the question is not whether an additional number of agents would have made a difference on the night of september 11, which
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is very difficult to answer, but whether a sustained and stronger staffing platform over the course of 2012 could have established some deterrence by giving it the continuity and experience on the ground to make it a harder target for terrorists. another deficit was the inherent weakness of the support element, absence of a strong central government presence and then got the -- in benghazi. neither libyan group performed well on the night of the attacks. overall, the board found the security systems and procedures were implemented properly by american personnel, but those systems themselves and the libyan response fell short of the night of the attacks. personal perform to the best of their ability and made every
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effort to protect, rescue, and recovered ambassador stevens and sean smith. their decision to depart the special mission without ambassador stephen came after repeated efforts of many security agents to find him in a smoke-filled the building still on fire. it was precipitated by second armed attack on the compound from the south. on the night of the attacks, tripoli and washington communicated in coordinated effectively with each other. the loop in the military right away and in your agency response was timely and appropriate, but there was simply not enough time ford military forces to have made a difference. having said that, it is not reasonable nor feasible to tether u.s. forces at the ready to respond to protect every high risk proposed in the world. we found there was no immediate tactical warning of the september 11 attacks, but there
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was the knowledge gap and the intelligence community understanding of extremist militia and libya and the potential threat they pose. although some threats were known. in this context, increased violence and targeting of foreign diplomats have failed to come in to clear relief against the backdrop of an effect of local governments, widespread political fighting and the growth of extremists camp and militia and eastern libya. but we did not find any individual do was simply engaged in willful misconduct or knowingly ignored his or her responsibilities, we did conclude that certain state department bureau-level senior officials in critical positions of authority and responsibility in washington demonstrated a lack of leadership and management ability appropriate for senior ranks and their responses to security concerns
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posed by the special mission. now i will ask the ambassador to conclude by giving an overview by some of the more overarching recommendations. >> thank you. but the lessons of the past and the challenges of the future in mind, we put forth recommendations in several key areas. we are recommending the state department undertake an urgent review to determine the proper balance between acceptable risk and missions tasks and needs, and high-risk and high-threat areas. the answer cannot be not to go into dangerous places, but there must be a clear mission, a clear understanding of the risks, a commitment of the enough resources to mitigate those risks, and an explicit acceptance of whatever costs and risks cannot be mitigated. this balance needs to be reviewed regularly in
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continuously because situations change. next, we recommend the department developed a minimum security standard for the operation of high-risk and high death threat environment and the received the equipment and supplies they need to counter various types of risks. we also believe the state department must work with the congress to expand funding to respond to emerging security threats and vulnerabilities and operational requirements and high-risk post. we found a number of recommendations from past arb's had not been implemented fully and relate to some of the recommendations we will be lead making or have made to the secretary that the congress will have to play its role in filling. because libya did not fit the mold of the usual diplomatic post as a result of the temporary status, this meant it
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was unable to get the security upgrades and oversight that it needed. we recommended various improvements in how temporary anti-risk, high-threat posed are managed. look on the ground and in washington so that they have the support they need. there should be changes in the way the staff provides more continuity and stability so that post have sufficient agents, diplomatic security agents with other security personnel. we also are recommending the department reexamined the bureau of diplomatic securities organization and management to ensure all post get the attention they need from upper management, and should appear jointly look at the use of fire as a weapon and how to counter it. the state department should establish an outside panel of experts with experience and-
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punch risk and high-threat areas to watch changing events and changes of recommendations to the apartment security officials. we're delighted to see the secretary is committed to the expeditious and urgent implementation of all of our recommendations, and now we would be happy to take your questions and appreciate your giving us this opportunity to brief you on the report. >> thank you very much for doing this briefing. the report to a layman it seems to indicate rank incompetence or a complete lack of understanding of the situation on the ground. my question is, why is such a poor performance from senior leaders, why is that not a breach or dereliction of duty? why is that not grounds for disciplinary action? secondly, after the 1998
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bombings of kenya and tanzania, they came out with a series of recommendations. many of your recommendations today are very similar. those bombings in east africa were supposed to have been and never again moment. what happened between then and now, this could possibly have popped up? the gulf but, some can't go it is very clear and to the ball -- >> it is very clear under the walt one has to find a willful misconduct or similar, and of action in order to find a breach of duty. one of our recommendations is there is such a large gap between willful misconduct, which leads to conclusions about discipline and ballclub un unless billable of
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individuals from duty, that the political, automatic week found perhaps aho close to and to report a breach, but there were performance inadequacies. those are the ones we believe should be taken up. we have made recommendations to the secretary in that regard. >> the second one. what happened? how did the lessons of kenya get forgotten? >> let me just mention that. we of course have made a recommendation that the unimplemented are only partially implemented recommendations of all previous boards be reviewed rapidly by the state department inspector general, with the idea of mind of ensuring they are carried out. if you read the report, you will see in part, recollections from the past in each chapter and the citation to the nairobi
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recommendation that need to be carried out. we very much agree with the impetus of your question. >> it begs the question of why did that happen? obviously a lot of time is a factor. clearly no specific follow-up overtime. one of the major recommendations was a bill the plan, which fell off from 10 buildings to three, tied to budget constraints. so i think it was a combination of factors. while 1999 is certainly close to this decade, the world has changed dramatically. risks associated with that world are -- we are in a much more difficult and challenging position with respect to meeting the needs to be out there and is engaged in doing so in a way that our people are very specifically secure. >> there is a specific recommendation for a 10-year program at a specific level of
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funding specifically to meet the point that admiral mullen made that the building program has fallen off any took about to the original target. >> your report was extremely critical of the performance of some individuals and the diplomatic security, but these pierrots do not exist in a vacuum. they are part of a hierarchical organization known as the department of state, and each has the chain of command. there are undersecretaries and deputy secretary and the secretary herself who oversees the bureau. what is the highest level at the department of state larry you fix responsibility for what happened? >> we fixed it at the assistant secretary level, which is an our
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view, the appropriate place to look where the decision making in fact takes place. where if you like, the rubber hits the road. one of the interesting things about the statutory basis for the review board was it was biased against the idea that one could automatically hold the leader of a particular department of agency responsible without pinpointing the place where the failures of place and the lesson should be important for fixing the problem. fixing the problem and binding the difficulties with a major task we have to undertake. >> i would add to that, certainly was a concern that we had as we initiated the review. we just found, and as someone who has run a large organization, and secretary state has been very clear about taking responsibility here. it was, from my perspective, not
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reasonable in terms of her having a specific level of knowledge that was very specific the residents in her staff, and over time certainly did not bring that to her attention. >> thank you. i was going to ask about the personnel issues. a couple of others. you offered -- the secretary said there are 29 recommendations. in the unclassified, there were only 24. without getting into classified material, if you could classify what the recommendations -- the they have to do with intelligence matters you cannot discuss, or at least the areas of recommendations. also, you said in the report that there was no mob. how did you come to that conclusion? >> your suspicion to missing
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recommendations is correct. some of those involved intelligence. we arrived in october 4, 2012, for our first meeting. at that point we found the intelligence community had clearly concluded and provided us that conclusion that there was no protest. to go -- >> can i follow up of the intelligence. you said perhaps it would involve intelligence. would you see reaching out to members of the intelligence community and briefing them on helping them implement? >> this report is now the secretaries. >> [inaudible] >> can you confirm the resignations of the department personnel today, the association
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with that in any detail on that. secondly, you talked about the understanding of the nature of the militia threat. whose responsibility should that have been to have a better matrix for that? if that information had been provided as it should have been provided, the you think it would have been still advisable for the ambassador to make that threat? >> that is obviously a department issue, and you should address that to the department. >> secondly, i made it very clear this is a country in transition. one of the umbrella organizations that has come out with respect to lack of support that night or a security response, which was the expected response, was that 17, but as we dug into it, it is a very loose
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group of local militias that float in and out of that umbrella over time. there is an intelligence gaps that existed in that time in eastern libya broadly. not as far as, but many countries out there. you have to take that into consideration in terms of understanding the environment. >> you should also take into account the fact of the libyan government was almost absent from the scene in terms of responsibilities under the geneva convention to provide support. in many ways february 17, as difficult as it was, while it had responded positively to less threatening questions in the past, was the best that anyone could find. to go -- >> thank you for doing the briefing. in the report you specifically referred to the idea that the
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ambassador did not keep washington fully informed about the movement. why is that relevant? what role did the ambassador have, being a lead person in terms of determining security? it is my understanding ambassadors do not normally go to fight each and every movement. >> it is a question that occurred to many people. project relief because the ambassador is the person at his post. he could does not have the requirement normally not notify anyone outside the country of his or her movements. is it correct to understand ambassador stephen title role in deciding their security position? >> as the chief of mission, he certainly had a responsibility
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in that regard, and actually, he was very security conscious, and increasingly concerned about security, but part of his responsibility is to make the case back here. he had not gone to the point where you might get to a point where you would be considering it is so dangerous we might close the compound or something like that. >> edge you know, and on a cursory day -- on the anniversary day, 9/11, spent the entire day inside the mission with appointments coming to him. we will just take one more question from fox news. >> just to follow on the last question, would you say ambassador stevens the shares some of the blame for the lack of security? >> we very clearly of the report
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made our indications open and transparent about where we felt the problems were in terms of decision making. ambassador stevens on several occasions was supportive of additional security to watching it very carefully in knowing what was going on. ambassador stevens perhaps have the best knowledge of any american official. that was taken in washington as a very serious conclusion about going. >> why such a passing reference to military involvement? can you explain why they could not have done more? >> we look at the posture very specifically. while we had a lot of forces in europe, at sea and on land, it is not reasonable they could have responded. this was over in a matter of 20-
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30 minutes with respect to special mission specifically. and we had no forces ready or tethered, if you will, to focus on the mission. to go there was no mention of the cia report despite their close to the pact and more personal than they had diplomats. did they share --- >> we cannot discuss classified organizations. >> thank you all very much. >> two committees are holding hearings today on the attack on the consulate in libya that killed four americans. the senate foreign relations committee. we will hear from william burns and others at 8:00 eastern. you can see that live on c-
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span2. he will go to the other side of the capital in the afternoon to testify before the house foreign affairs committee about the libya report. that is live on c-span3 at 1:00 eastern. in a few moments, today's headlines and your calls live on "washington journal." the house is in session at noon eastern to hear plan be addressing the so-called fiscal cliff. in about 45 minutes, we will focus on gun control issues with democratic representative don -- john yarmuth. tim hilscamp will talk about the latest on the negotiations on the fiscal cliff. the fiscal cliff. --